Social Inclusion is increasingly being recognised as a key health and wellbeing issue, and the impacts of social exclusion (social isolation, lack of social connectedness, low social and civic trust, low civic participation, disaffection, and low social support), may be more harmful to health, both physical and mental, than smoking or obesity.
Social Inclusion is recognised as a significant local issue across the Inner East by community and women’s health, and local government. It was also recognised as one of three key social issues for the region by the Eastern Metropolitan Social Issues Council (EMSIC) in 2015.
The COVID -19 pandemic has impacted social inclusion. Whilst there have been some positives, such as new and increased online connections, limited capacity for us to get together, home schooling, limitations at work and uncertainties on many fronts have been challenging. This has demonstrated the importance of taking a dynamic approach to fostering social inclusion.
Some key areas of our work are:
- We developed and launched a social inclusion framework which guides actions to promote social inclusion and an inclusive society
- We established the Inner East International Students and social inclusion partnership to increase inclusion of international students in our catchment
- We provide backbone support for the Integrated Health Promotion partners on the shared priority of social inclusion